Sometimes in life, we think we can go it alone, or that we are better off on our own.
Give it a try and you will see, it is better to do life with community.
One day, Lucas the Artichoke lad, snapped. “I don’t want to help clean the house anymore!” he yelled at his mother and father. “I’m tired of being your slave and doing all your chores!” Lucas went to his room while his mother came to talk to him.
“Lucas, we must all contribute to the work of the household. Each of us helps in their own way-”
“I don’t care!” Lucas interrupted as he grabbed some of his belongings and threw them on the floor.
“What are you doing?” his mother asked with concern brewing on her face.
“I’m packing my things. I’ve ha it, and I’m moving out.” His mother watched him gather his belongings and shove them into a knapsack.
“Are you sure you want to do that?” she asked.
“Yes. I’m tired of your rules and I want to make my own.” He said as he threw the knapsack on his back.
“I understand, sweetie. We do require each of your sibling to work as well, and all of them are okay with it,” she pointed out
“Ya, well… it’s different for me. I don’t like sweeping, so I’m leaving,” Lucas walked out the front door.
His parents and siblings all came out to stand on the porch. The smallest of them waved, not understanding where Lucas was going.
“Lucas,” his father called out to him. “Remember, you are always welcome in our home. I wish you the best of luck as you embark to create your own.”
Lucas did not even turn around, say thank you, or I love you. He just went.
Lucas walked into the woods to start his new life. He began by gathering sticks to make a shelter. He piled them on top of each other, and soon had a small lean-to. He sat inside of it, proud of his accomplishment.
It was not long before he realized he had not brought food or water. He got up and began to search. He hiked through the woods and found nothing to eat but small brown mushrooms next to a thin creek of dirty water.
“Here we go,” he said scooping a handful of the liquid into his mouth. “Yuck!” he spat it out. “This water is not even clean!” Lucas went back to his lean-to and played with his toys. There were no rules out here but his own, and he could play with his toys as long as he liked.
Soon the sun set. He huddled himself underneath the makeshift shelter and began to feel very cold. Darkness settled and strange noises were out in the woods. The hoot of an owl, the whisper of the wind, and the crack of a small twig sent Lucas’s heart spinning. He listened, terrified that something might come into his lean-to and devour him. His heart raced as he sat there in the bitter dark.
When he thought that it could get no worse, it started to rain. Thunder cracked overhead and showers poured down on him. Rain drops falling right through his house of twigs. He was soon soaked through all of his leaves. “I miss my house,” he shivered in the cold as he finally started to realize what he had left.
Lucas stayed up all night long. He could not sleep a wink between the cold, rain, and terrors unknown. When dawn cracked the next day, Lucas packed his toys back into his knapsack and returned home, sopping wet. He knocked on the door of his house, and when his parents came to the door he said, “Can I come home please?”
His mother and father smiled, opened their arms to greet him, and lovingly said, “Oh my child, you cannot yet do life on your own, you are not yet full grown. But even then, you cannot go it alone. Life in isolation is a devastation. You need others for self-edification. Child, you are loved and welcome here. Please enter, return, stay with us my dear.”